This will be a short and to the point review for a short and to the point record, that manages to be incredibly effective in its short timeframe. Freelove Fenner have mastered the art of pushing out rhythmically simple guitar pop songs on their debut record, Do Not Affect a Breezy Manner. The jangly, decidedly lo fi sound of their previously released EPs is expanded into a half an hour, 18 song release recorded in their own all-analog studio.
Each track, none reaching three minutes, shines with distinctive melodies and interesting wordplay. A stand-out includes “Dr. D”, dealing with the tensions between art and science using the perspective of a doctor and an artist: “and the doctor knows well the paintings won’t sell”, “the artist wants things the doctor can’t swing.”
Many of the songs are variations on the same instrumental theme of guitar hook and mid-tempo rhythm, but the freshness of each song prevents this from getting old. Each song stands on its own, adding up to a collection proving their talent as melody crafters. The formula breaks for the last song, “Fire One”, including radar blips and a radio voice repeating the title leading into an explosion and women laughing. It’s an interesting way to end things, leaving a highly individual touch to an already unique record.
The album comes out on November 19, but until then you can listen and pre-order it on their Bandcamp.
Rating: Strong Hoot (Good)
Top Tracks: “Dr. D”, “In the Sound”